Tour of Africa

Friday, April 17, 2015

West African Eba Onion Fritters Recipe

West African Eba Onion Fritters Recipe

West African Eba Onion Fritters Recipe by Bob B Brown
African recipes by African Gourmet

West African Eba Onion Fritters are a delicious golden brown recipe made with ground cassava flour, onions and spices fried into delicious snacks.

Prep time: Cook time: Total time:

Ingredients:

2 cups cassava flour

1/2 onion finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1 tablespoon white sugar

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 - 1/3 cups water

1-2 cups oil for frying

Directions:

In a large frying pan heat vegetable oil. Add all ingredients, mix well and form small fritters, fry in hot oil until golden brown about 3 minutes on each side. Sprinkle with extra salt or curry powder before serving.

West African Eba Onion Fritters Recipe by Bob B Brown

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Beauty of Our Elders: Timeless African Beauty

Beautiful African woman in day to day life throughout Africa, redefining the traditional face of timeless African aged beauty.




Somali Mature Beauty photo by Trocaire

Somali Mature Beauty
Are there objective standards of beauty? Beauty is said to be in the eye of the beholder. The definition of beauty is one of the most enduring and provocative subjects around the world. Humans are hardwired to respond to beauty, the type of beauty that defies time and also embraces

Somali Mature Beauty photo by Trocaire
Barabaig Woman Mang'ati, Datooga Tanzania by Pius Mahimbi
Barabaig Woman Mang'ati, Datooga
Tanzania Traditional Aged Beauty

Traditional concepts of beauty are being shattered with aims to empower elderly women to redefine the traditional perception of beauty in the push toward a new inclusive vision of beautiful. True aged beauty is taking pride in your own mind, body and soul, accepting and loving the skin you were born into.







“The best bed one can sleep on is peace"
- Somali proverb

Berber Woman Beauty by Joan Sorolla
Berber Traditional Elderly Beauty
 
"Those who respect the elderly pave their own road toward success."
- African Proverb

 

 
Mount Kenya Woman Beauty by CIAT
Mount Kenya Woman Traditional Mature Beauty 
Zanzibar Beauty by David Dennis Photos
Zanzibar Woman Traditional Venerable Beauty

"Old age is not a disease, but a richness." 
- Burundi Proverb


Tesemay Tribe, Ethiopia Beauty by Rod Waddington
Tesemay Tribe, Ethiopia Traditional Esteemed Beauty 
Maasai Traditional Beauty by William Warby
Maasai Traditional Revered Beauty 



















"Who listens to the voice of the elderly is like a strong tree; who turns a deaf ear is like a twig in the wind."
- Tanzanian Proverb

Southern African Traditional Beauty
Southern African Traditional Prized Beauty 
Vakaga, Central African Republic Traditional Cherished Beauty by hdptcar
Vakaga, Central African Republic
Traditional Cherished Beauty 
“When an elder dies, a library is burnt down to the ground” 
- African Proverb

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Waiting for Justice in Uganda's Luzira Maximum Security Prison

Luzira Men's and Woman's Maximum Security Prison is the second largest prison in Uganda, there is nothing routine about a court appearance or a sentencing hearing at Luzira.



Under the Ugandan constitution, every citizen has the right to a state attorney and the right to a speedy trial.
Yellow is the color of sunshine, it is associated with joy and happiness. In Uganda's Luzira Maximum Security Prison yellow is anything but the color of joy, yellow is associated with a prison sentence or awaiting charges, sometimes waiting for years for justice.

Luzira is a district of Kampala, Uganda’s capital city. Luzira is best known for Luzira Maximum Security Prison, Kampala Uganda's largest Prison. According to the Institute for War and Peace reporting under the Ugandan constitution, anyone accused of murder has the right to have their case heard by the High Court within a year of being arrested. According to the ministry of justice, the number of imprisonment cases that are yet to be heard stands at more than 40,000, some 32,000 on legal custody in prison and the rest on bail. The majority of these cases are offences such murder, treason, terrorism, rape and aggravated robbery, crimes which carry either an optional or mandatory death penalty, and which can only be tried by the High Court.

Guards at Luzira prison in Kampala

In April, the problem was so serious that the Ugandan government launched an initiative to slash the backlog of cases by 30 percent by the end of 2011, this goal was not met. March, 23, 2015 the Directorate of Public Prosecutions, DPP drafted a new case management system to reduce case backlog and ensure efficient management of cases, the DPP, Hon. Justice Mike Chibita, has said. "In the new case management system, it will not be a requirement that case files recalled to the office of the DPP are transferred to Kampala but will be handled by particular assigned judicial officers”.



Luzira Maximum Security Prison is the 2nd largest male prison in UgandaUnder the Ugandan constitution, every citizen has the right to a state attorney and the right to a speedy trial. However, it is much harder for prisoners to get out on bail if they do not have adequate legal representation therefore; they remain in prison sometimes for years. In Uganda some are awaiting trail while legislation in Uganda proposes the death penalty for gay people, aggravated homosexuality, and imprisonment for families who fail to report their gay relatives to the police within 24 hours of finding out about their sexuality. In many African countries those imprisoned for being in debt are made to pay rent to the prisons.

On the grounds of Luzira Maximum Security Prison, children of the prison staff live in the barracks along with their parents. Built for 600 men but currently housing up to 2,000 Luzira Maximum Security Prison is the 2nd largest male prison in Uganda. Murchison Bay wing houses the male prisoners in cramped living quarters, sometimes inmates sleep outside because there is not enough room to sleep inside. Carpentry programs are the most popular programs, along with the Condemned Choir of Luzira Prison which is made up of inmates on death row.

Luzira Maximum Security Women's Prison Luzira Maximum Security Women's Prison wing sits on 20 acres of land and houses around 430 prisoners. The women are classed by the color of their uniforms; yellow is for prisoners or people awaiting trial, orange colors received a sentence of 20 or more years, and red with white checks are sentenced to death. If prisoners give birth in prison or were breastfeeding when sentenced, the babies stay with their mothers until the age of 2 then they are taken to a daycare on the prison property and visit their mothers each Sunday. After the age of 4 the children are relocated off prison grounds to a children’s home, The Family of Africa, awaiting release of their mothers.

There is an educational system, a beauty parlor, sewing, basket making and arts and crafts at Luzira Maximum Security Women's Prison. The beauty parlor and training school was launched on Thursday May 23, 2013. The choir at Luzira women’s prison has many members who have been sentenced to death. Tumuhirwe Jolly a 22 year old former maid is in Luzira Prison, on December 8, 2014 she was sentenced to 4 years in prison for the severe battery of a child. The baby recovered from her psychical injuries and is happy and healthy living with her parents.


Dinner time at Luzira Maximum Security PrisonThe African Prisons Project provides standards for human rights, and rehabilitative approaches to imprisonment. In 2004 Alexander McLean, volunteering in a nearby hospital in Kampala, visited and treated a group of prisoners in Luzira Upper Prison Uganda.  Struck by the living conditions of the prisoners, Africa Prisons Project, APP continues working closely with prison administrators, prison staff and the prisoners themselves to identify their needs. To date APP has touched the lives of over 25,000 prison inmates and staff in Uganda, Kenya, Sierra Leone and Nigeria.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Chimurenga Magazine: Who No Know Go Know

Groundbreaking artist Ntone Edjabe is a talented Cameroonian writer, journalist, DJ and founding editor of the award winning South African based Chimurenga magazine described as better than the New Yorker. The magazines motto -Who no know go know- was made famous by Nigerian Afrobeat activist Fela Kuti.


Chimurenga magazine founded by Cameroonian Editor Ntone Edjabe in 2002Struggle for Freedom or Chimurenga in Zimbabwe's Shona language 
is a Pan-African publication of culture, art and politics based in Cape Town. The magazine was described in 2012 by a British writer as "better than The New Yorker." Founded by Cameroonian Editor Ntone Edjabe in 2002, it provides an innovative platform for free ideas and political reflection by Africans about Africa. The magazine is based in Cape Town, South Africa and in 2011 won the prestigious Prince Claus Award which is given annually to individuals, groups and organizations for their outstanding achievements in the field of culture and development. Edjabe says “It's a smart mix of fiction, reporting, essays, manifestos and art, all pegged to a vision of the pan African.” Chimurenga is published sporadically, usually twice a year with 14 African writers visiting 14 African cities to explore the complexities of Africa’s different urban landscapes.

One person’s truth is another person’s lie; Xenophobia is the unreasoned fear felt to be foreign or bizarre. The Chimurenga Chronicle, takes on the form of a newspaper backdated to the week of May 11 – 18, 2008, the period marked by the rash xenophobic violence in South Africa that is occurring to this day April 2015.
Who No Know Go Know- is a song by the legendary Afrobeat artist Fela Kuti

Chimurenga’s motto “Who No Know Go Know” is a song by the legendary Nigerian Fela Kuti. Born Olufela Olusegun Oludotun Ransome-Kuti, he pioneered the groundbreaking form of music known as Afrobeat, a blend of jazz, funk and African rhythm and harmonies, which he used to spread his message of uniting against oppression in Nigeria. AfroBeat consciences were Fela Kuti gifts to the world writing lyrics that rebelled against the Nigerian government. Chimurenga founder and Editor Ntone Edjabe is also a DJ currently studying at Khoj International Artists' Association.

DJ'Ntone Edja
Ntone Edjabe is a writer, journalist, DJ and founding editor of Chimurenga magazine. He is currently a researcher in residence at Khoj. http://www.chimurenga.co.za/
Posted by Khoj International Artists' Association on Tuesday, September 30, 2014


Read more an Africa's talented artists:
Talented photographer of Nigerian Hairstyles, Johnson Donatus Aihumekeokhai Ojeikere also known as J.D. 'Okhai Ojeikere highlighted modern and traditional African perspectives of the art of hair design.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Rastafarians in Ethiopia: Returning Home to Africa

Listening to the call to return home to the birthplace of humankind, the Stateless Nation of Shashamane Ethiopia, the African Rastafarian Promised Land and her Jamharic youth battle nationality issues and possession of gifted land.


When Haile Selassie I, born Tafari Makonnen Woldemikael , was declared emperor of Ethiopia in 1930, the followers of Marcus Garvey believed his prophecy of a black King being crowned had been fulfilled. They declared His Imperial Majesty to be the Messiah. Shashamane is 152 miles south of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital city. With around 800 people living in and around its city most are not Jamaicans, Rastafarians settle in Shashamane from around the world.

Jamharics are viewed as not being Ethiopian by Ethiopians or Jamaican by Jamaicans. The settlement in Shashamane in the southern portion of Ethiopia traces its roots to the 1948 Shashamane Land Grant by Emperor Haile Selassie I to members of the Ethiopian World Federation in gratitude for their defense of Ethiopia during the Second Italo-Ethiopian War if they would come back home to Africa. In April 1941 the Italian troops concentrated in Shashamane after suffering several attacks by the British and South African Armies, and Ethiopian resistance fighters. In 1948 Ethiopian Haile Selassie I set aside 494 acres of land to reward members of the Rastafari movement, Ethiopian World Federation members and other settlers from Jamaica and other parts of the Caribbean who helped Ethiopia during the Italian liberation battles.

Immigration to Shashamane Ethiopia continues slowlyThe official letter confirming the land grant of 1948 was submitted to the members and executives of the Ethiopian World Federation in 1955. Following up on this, the first West Indian family and Federation members from Montserrat were Mr. James Piper and his wife Helen who arrived that same year as the first land grant administrators, returning to make a permanent settlement in 1955 on behalf of the Federation.

According to Earth Culture Roots, “Rastafari recognizes Africa as the central origin of religious history, culture, science and technology. Africa, symbolized in the scriptures by Ethiopia is an emotional magnet for many Africans that are calling us home to the continent which our ancestors were taken by force from more than three hundred years ago, during slavery, the black holocaust.” The call to Africa has always been strong, known as Grounation Day, on April 21, 1966, Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie I visited Jamaica and Rastafari celebrated the world over. The visit was the only time the Emperor visited Jamaica. When Haile Selassie I was ousted in 1974 the new government of Mengistu Haile Mariam confiscated all but 27 acres of the 494 acres gifted to the Rastafari people. Nevertheless, settlers endured and immigration continues slowly to this day listening to the call and returning home to Shashamane Ethiopia in Africa.

Ethiopian nationality laws does not incorporate the concept of jus soli, a rule that the citizenship of a child is determined by the place of its birth. The children of Rastafarians living in Ethiopia are not citizens of the country and cannot access certain public services reserved for Ethiopian citizens. Children born to an Ethiopian citizen and a Rastafarian are considered foreigners in Ethiopia, not recognized as an Ethiopian citizen must go through immigration process to become Ethiopian citizens. These children are called Jamharics who are viewed as not being Ethiopian by Ethiopians or Jamaican by Jamaicans.
The settlement in Shashamane in the southern portion of Ethiopia

Other major issues for Rastafarians living in Shashamene is the smoking of marijuana or wisdom weed which is considered an herb of religious significance to Rastafari. It is used in Rastafari reasoning sessions, which are communal meetings involving meditation. However, marijuana is regarded as a dangerous drug, comparable to heroin or cocaine in Ethiopian society. Rastafarians living in Shashamene want to shake the image of Rastafarians smoking weed all day and hanging around listening to reggae music, Rastafari is much more than weed, dreadlocks and reggae. In Shashamene in the rift valley of Ethiopia, the Rastafari built three schools, numerous businesses including hotels and restaurants. For Rastafarians all over the world survival is a must in Shashamene.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Black Mamba Snake Venom: Kiss of Death Breath of Life

Properties that make the black mamba snake venom deadly are also what make it so valuable for medicine. The black mamba’s venom, painkilling proteins mambalgins and potent neuro-toxins and cardio-toxins are a paradox of life and death.


The black mamba is sub-Sahara’s Africa deadliest snakes growing up to 13 feet in length, traveling at speeds of up to 12 mph and two drops of venom can kill a person, a mamba can have up to 20 drops in its fangs. Black mambas come in many colors, from beige to brown, gray body with a light colored belly. Their name is derived from the color of their mouths rather than their skin. The snakes open their mouths when threatened and inside their mouth is a pitch black color.
Black mamba name is derived from the color of their mouths rather than their skin.


Highly venomous and feared throughout the world, black mambas are famed for being the fastest and most dangerous snakes in sub-Sahara Africa. The black mamba potent venom contains both neurotoxins and cardiotoxins; the first affects the nervous system, while the latter attacks the heart. Its preferred habitat includes termite mounds, hollow tree trunks, granite hillocks and moist savannah and lowland forests. The female lies between 10 to 25 eggs and never returns to the hatchlings.

The black mamba bite symptoms include swelling and pain with a burning sensation, slurred speech, tunnel and blurred vision, drowsiness, mental confusion, and finally paralysis of all muscle groups including the heart by blocking messages between nerves and muscle. Ironically, the black mamba also has painkilling proteins called mambalgins and these painkilling compounds are as potent as morphine. Venom from snakes has long been used for medicinal purposes.  


Highly venomous and feared throughout Africa black mamba snakes
The properties that make the black mamba venom deadly are also what make it so valuable for medicine. Its venom toxins target the same molecules that need to be controlled to treat certain diseases. According to Time.com and BBC.com it’s a challenge to find the toxin that hits only a certain target, but already top medicines for heart disease and diabetes have been derived from venom. 

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Ghana's Best Waterfall: Wli Agumatsa Waterfalls of Ghana

Once ruled by the Germans and the French, the Volta Region is the easterly region of Ghana bordering on Togo. Walking through the forest with just birds and butterflies for company the beautiful Wli Agumatsa Waterfalls of Volta Region of Ghana is a site to behold. 


Wli Falls is the highest waterfall in West Africa
The Volta region of Ghana covers an area of about 20,000 square kilometers or 5 million acres representing nearly 9 percent of Ghana. Its capital is Ho; it lies near Mount Adaklu. Waterfalls frequently form in Africa where water rushes down steep hillsides and quickly erode soft rocks while leaving behind harder rocks. Running water erodes rock, but some rocks are more resistant than others to erosion. Waterfalls occur when a change in steepening of a gradient of rocks occur down steep hillsides. Until you see the Wli also known as Agumatsa Waterfall it's hard to imagine the size and beauty of Ghana’s most remarkable waterfall.


The most popular waterfall of the Volta Region is the Wli Waterfalls located in the Wli Nature Reserve. Wli Falls is the highest waterfall in West Africa and the second highest in Africa. The Wli Waterfalls has two distinct falls the highest waterfall has an about 196-262 foot drop or 60-80 meters and is a part of the Agumatsa River. The Wli Waterfall is located in the Agumatsa Wildlife sanctuary. Living in the trees on the cliffs of the Wli falls are thousands of fruit bats clinging to its walls. The cliffs alongside the falls are home to thousands of  straw-colored fruit bats that captivate the imagination of tourists. The bats are the second largest bats on the African continent and are one of the largest types of fruit bat measuring almost 9 inches in length.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Mama Lishes: Urban African Street Food Scene

Street foods are ready to eat foods and drinks prepared and sold by vendors in the streets, markets and small restaurants also called shanty eating places, mama lishes, roadside stands or hole in the walls. 


Foumban market Cameroon Central Africa.There are many different kinds of street vendors,
including those at kiosks and mobile stands, those who sell from carts, bicycles, trucks or from cloths set out on the street, and street hawkers who walk around with plates of food. With the rise of urban businesses and growing urban populations demand for ready to eat affordable food is increasing.
In most African countries, street food preparation and selling provides a regular source of income for millions of men, women and children. Women play the major role in street food sales throughout Africa. In some African cities, street vending may provide up to 60 percent of employment to people with limited financial capital. Start-up investment and the overheads in the street vending business are relatively low, and cooking requires little or no formal training. 
Albert Market Banjul Gambia West Africa 
The convenience of purchasing food from street vendors is cherished by many people, including tourists becoming a beloved part of local culture. For the poor street foods provide the least expensive and most accessible means of obtaining a nutritionally balanced meal outside their home.
An estimated 2.5 billion people worldwide consume street food each day. Many of these consumers have little money and cannot afford to buy food from retail stores and depend on food that street vendors provide. Also, in many large cities street food is ready to eat food and is a necessity for many as they have little time for food preparation while at work or do not have the time to travel back home for their meals. Street food consumers most often see street and snack food as home cooked food.

Senegal food vendor in West Africa. Health and food safety concerns are important issues to consumers. Local food production is an important source of fresh vegetables for street food preparation. Since locally produced food requires less transportation and refrigeration, street vendors can supply nearby markets with fresher and more nutritious produce and meat products. Food growing locally helps improve the quality of people’s diets by providing fresh produce and meats at better prices. Food purchased locally aids the local economy which is central to Africa’s economic development. 


In Ghana a popular street food dish is waakye, a hearty beans and rice recipe with red leaves and gari. Konkonte or banku is a popular roadside dish served in Nigeria; this traditional Nigerian starch served with groundnut soup or palm oil soup mixed with okra. Bunny chow is king of all street food in South Africa, this national dish is a hollowed out loaf of bread filled with vegetables and meat covered in rich curry gravy. 

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Sweet Potato Chapatis Flatbread Sandwich Recipe

Sweet Potato Chapatis Flatbread Sandwich Recipe

African Sweet Potato Chapati Recipe
 African Recipes by
Sweet potato chapatis flatbread sandwiches are a delicious and healthy Southern African recipe made with simple ingredients.

Prep time: Cook time: Total time:

Ingredients:
8 plain chapatis
1 small can sweet potatoes drained
1 handful sweet potato leaves
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon plain yogurt to top each chapatis
1 tablespoon butter

Directions:

In a medium pot add butter, water and sweet potato leaves, simmer 2 minutes. Add sweet potatoes heat 3 minutes. Fold mixture well cool 5 minutes. Add equal amounts of mixture on warm chapatis, top with yogurt and serve as a breakfast, lunch or snack flatbread sandwich. 

Making chapatis in Uganda.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Botswana Madombi Traditional Dumplings Recipe

Botswana Madombi Traditional Dumplings

Madombi Botswana Traditional Dumplings
African recipes by African Gourmet

Madombi are slightly sweet boiled dumplings served with Botswanan sauces, soups and stews.

Prep time: Cook time: Total time:

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
¼ teaspoon baking soda
Water for mixing
Water for boiling
Water
2 tablespoons of oil
1 teaspoon of salt

Directions:


Madombi Botswana Traditional Dumplings
In a large pot on high heat fill the pot half way with water and add two tablespoons of oil and one teaspoon of salt.

For the dough

Add all the dry ingredients and mix well. Slowly add water into the mixture until dough is formed. Dough should not be sticky. Make even size balls of dough and slightly flatten. One trick is to make an indentation in the middle of the flattened dough ball with your finger in order for the dumpling to cook faster. Carefully drop the dough into the boiling water cook 25-30 minutes serve with any Botswanan soup or stew meal.

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